Psalm 1
Semantics

Lexical Semantics

A crucial element in translating words is knowing the overlap between the cultural associations of the source language and the cultural associations of the receptor language.

We represent this relationship with Venn diagrams, putting the Hebrew cultural associations in green and, in yellow, the cultural associations of the creators of this work (Standard North American English). This exercise has been so helpful we recommend translation projects consider generating their own such diagrams for all key terms in a psalm.

It is useful to know what information is shared by both cultures (in the overlap), and so will readily come across with a standard gloss, what associations will be wrongfully associated with a translation (and so need to be guarded against: in the yellow only), and what associations from the Hebrew may need to be explicitly included, because they are foreign to the local terms (in the green only).

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Close-but-clear*

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Happy is the one who does not go in the counsel of wicked people, does not come to a standstill in the pathway of sinful people, and does not settle in the dwelling place of insolent people.

But his delight is in the instruction of YHWH, and he rehearses his instruction day and night.

 

 

And he will become like a tree transplanted on streams of water, which gives its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither, and he makes successful all that he does.

 

Not so the wicked people. Rather, they are like chaff that the wind drives away.

 

Therefore, wicked people will not stand firm in the trial, and sinful people will not stand in the congregation of righteous people.

 

Because YHWH cares for the way of righteous people, and the way of wicked people will come to an end.

* The "close-but-clear" is a formal-equivalent rendering of the Hebrew. It is based on the interlinear, adjusted for English word-order. It aims to be as close to the Hebrew as possible while still being clear in English. 

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Verbal Semantics

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Psalm 1 - Verbal semantics chart.jpg
 

Unit-level Semantics

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Expanded Paraphrase

Psalm 1 - Extended paraphrase.jpg